The on line Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
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Thursday, February 18, 2016
"Our Final Landing"
Message Summary: Have you made your peace with God and accepted the atoning work of Christ as the full payment for your sin? Actually our daily verse ends with a colon in the KJV and the remainder of the passage states: "So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation" (Hebrews 9:28). Is your destination confirmed? Are you ready for your final landing?
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"It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27).
CBMC is an international organization of Christian businessmen, active in 84 countries, where men gather who choose to live their lives for Christ. I have been a part of our local group since 2001 and through the years have met many committed Christians with a heart to reach out to others. My first contact was Bill Hoke who led the Lancaster group for many years prior to his passing several years ago.
Yesterday I attended a CBMC luncheon and heard Tom Hilterman, an airline pilot. (Tom on L, friend Ken Leaman, also a pilot, on R). Tom shared of his faith in Christ as well as several illustrations from flying that applied to life. He flies Boeing 777's for American Airlines and, as a veteran, he has had many experiences. In fact I suppose I could make a series of five messages based upon the 5 life lessons he shared.
Dave Hanson, a banker and our local Lancaster CBMC chairman, closed the meeting in prayer and shared a simple thought that caught my attention.
He reminded us that in life we have all had a take-off, our birth or more precisely our conception, and we will all have an appointed landing. He admitted to his politically incorrect expression of truth when he pointed out the two destinations upon landing; heaven or hell.
Our lives have many appointments but none more important, inevitable or imminent than the appointment mentioned in our daily text, "It is appointed...".
It's not a date that people post on their calendar but it is already scheduled. We just don't know when. The date of our final landing is not ours to make and yet our main concern in life is getting ready for it since we want to be ready!
Day by day we are reminded of this landing. Of course we are speaking about our appointment with death. Some days, especially when death hits close to home, we are especially reminded. But every day people everywhere around the world deal with death. For some, it's at the conclusion of a long and fulfilling life. But for others it's so unexpected and tragic. Just yesterday we shared the story of the young man on a Boston area highway killed when a tire came off another vehicle and crashed into his windshield, killing him instantly.
A number of emotions and realities set in at the death of a loved one, particularly a parent. I wrote in our message yesterday about my dad who passed away in 1998. The death of a parent is a stark recognition of my own physical mortality. When my dad received the phone call that his father (my grandpa) had passed away, I can still envision him standing next to the black rotary dial wall phone on our kitchen. I suppose it was the sober look on his face and the tone of his voice that made us realize that he was getting some bad news. After hanging up he leaned against the wall and quickly turned away to prevent my sister and me from seeing his tearful response. Thirty-five years later when Daddy died I knew just how he felt. One day it will be my final appointment.
However at my dad's memorial service I made the point that death is ultimately "non-final". Believers who are now alive have a promise that we will not precede those who have died as believers, but we will meet them in the air at Christ's return for His people (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). What a glorious day when the dead in Christ shall rise with believers in the air!
All Christians should memorize our daily verse: "It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27). We, as believers, join the rest of the human race in our future death appointment. Just as our birth (take-off) transitioned us into this temporal world, God's providential means of transition from this world (landing) is through death.
Scripture records two special circumstances when death was circumvented (Enoch and Elijah). Everyone else faces it, although there will be a special generation in the last times (perhaps our own) when believers will not die but will immediately rise to meet the Lord in the air. Following our death comes the judgment (the Judgment Seat of Christ for the believer and the Great White Throne Judgment for the unbeliever). One rewards the faithful, the other is eternal retribution.
Have you made your peace with God and accepted the atoning work of Christ as the full payment for your sin? Actually our daily verse ends with a colon in the KJV and the remainder of the passage states: "So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation" (Hebrews 9:28). Is your destination confirmed? Are you ready for your final landing?
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, we lift our eyes to the Eastern sky, for we know that You will soon return to gather believers in the air along with those who have already died. But until that wonderful event or until You call us home at our appointed hour of death we are to live as if this is our last day on earth. We want our hearts to be right, our conscience to be clear and our sins to be forgiven. We want to leave a godly legacy for those who remain, in hopeful expectation that they too will make proper preparation for their appointed day of death. Help us to live not just for here and now, but for our final landing in eternity. In the name of Jesus. Amen.
Just a fun side note from Brooksyne for bargain shoppers: Yesterday we had a long day of chaplain visitation beginning early in the morning near Strasburg, PA with our last visit in the late afternoon in Palmyra, PA. Stephen, weary, from our many visits rested in the van while I had a bit of fun indulging in one of my favorite hobbies; shopping in a thrift store. Like any thrift store you can shop and find nothing of interest and other days you can find all sorts of "treasures". Yesterday I purchased the picadilly ceramic 11X13 dish for $5.00, the picadilly au gratin dish (lead salad photo) for $4.00 and the "faith, hope & happiness" platter for $4.50. (BTW all the dishes were new.)
Upon our arrival home I wanted to bake in the two large ceramic dishes so I looked up the imprinted name, www.mackenzie-childs.com, from the bottom of the dishes for instructions in using proper oven temp, microwave, etc. Wow! Was I ever surprised to find that together these two pieces sell for $270.00 The smaller platter (unrelated to mackenzie childs) sells for $30.00 making my savings from this shopping trip a total of $286.50!
Stephen was rewarded for his patience by the large salad I prepared in the new dish!
Emilio and Dennis are working hard on this large control panel for a chicken house. We regularly affirm employees in their working hard and living responsibly. Next time you eat chicken or eggs remember people like this who work behind the scenes.
Unusual sights of Lancaster County
Near New Holland we pass a farm with a harness racing track in the field with many old-order Mennonites enjoying a spin around the track.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"Redemption Draweth Nigh" Video Ernie Haas
"For Future Generations" Video 4Him
"Where There Is Faith" Video 4Him
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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